Description: Description: Description: uwec
Information Systems Department


IS 320, Internship in Information Systems I, 1-3 credits
(for IS majors prior to admission to the College of Business)

IS 420, Internship in Information Systems II, 1-3 credits
(for IS majors after admission to the College of Business)

    Office hours:

 Dr. Jean A. Pratt
 SSS 401
 By appointment


IS 320: IS 240, sophomore standing
IS 420: Admission to the College of Business, junior standing (IS 310, 344, 345 recommended but not required)



Career Services Internship Site | Course Goals | Objectives | Accommodation of Disabilities | Comfortable Learning Environment | Work Required for the Course | Student Evaluation | Course Schedule | D2L Site |


COURSE GOALS: This course is designed to help IS majors obtain high-quality professional experience in an IS work environment prior to graduation. It is also designed to add value to the IS work of internship provider organizations by providing competent interns.


OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this course center on helping IS students and potential employers share mutual benefits:

1.      Assure a rewarding and educational work experience for IS interns.

2.      Assure a cost-effective work contribution for IS internship providers.

3.      Develop and maintain relationships between the IS Department and potential employers of IS graduates.

4.      Gather IS industry information for use in IS curriculum development.



ACCOMMODATION OF DISABILITIES: Students with disabilities are encouraged to discuss their needs with the instructor, preferably during the first week of class. All reasonable accommodations will be made to see that disabilities do not restrict a student's opportunity to learn. Help is also available from the Disability Resource Center (Old Library 2136, phone 715/836-4542).


COMFORTABLE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT: UW-Eau Claire, the IS Department, and your instructor are all committed to maintaining an inoffensive, non-threatening learning environment for every student. All internship participants are thus to treat each other politely—both in word and deed. Offensive humor and unwanted personal advances are specifically forbidden. If you feel uncomfortable with a personal interaction related to this class, feel free to see the instructor for help in solving the problem. The IS Department chair, the dean of the College of Business, and UWEC's Affirmative Action Office are also available to help as needed.


WORK REQUIRED FOR THE COURSE: The class is organized as a limited-term (three- to nine-month), on-site, full-time work experience for IS students prior to graduation. Course content centers on development of internship objectives, learning to work productively to accomplish those objectives in a professional IS environment, adding value to the organization providing the internship, developing in-depth knowledge of the IS profession.


STUDENT EVALUATION: Students' grades in the course consist of the components listed next, each component contributing the indicated percentage of the total grade:


Internship Enrollment

Internship Goals


Site Visit


Daily Log


Work Samples


Final Report


Performance Evaluation


Ethical Conduct


Internship Enrollment: To enroll in IS 420, you need to complete an internship enrollment form. This form is available from the IS Department internship coordinator or on the Web. After completing the form, submit it to the IS Department internship coordinator for approval and signature. After the form is approved, the internship coordinator will give permission in CampS for you to enroll in this course and will send you email informing you that you are clear to enroll. After you receive this message, you may use CampS to enroll in the course. Complete this process as soon as possible during the preregistration period for the semester in which you plan to do the internship; e.g., complete this process during spring semester for a summer internship. If you do end up having to register after preregistration finishes, which does happen sometimes, don’t worry about it; do, however, remember that you must register in person at the UWEC Records and Registration Office.


Note that university policy requires you to enroll in this course during the time you actually do the internship work. This is because enrolling before or after the internship work does not allow the relationship-building and quality assurance essential to a high quality internship experience.


Note also that it is crucial to enroll for credit when you have used University resources to obtain an internship. The reason the internship program continues to exist is that student credit hours are generated in the course, providing evidence that students participate in the program. In other words, the program exists for you because students who went before you paid their tuition and enrolled in the course. For the program to continue for future students, you need to do the same.


Note also that when you enroll, you must enter the number of credits in CampS that you have been approved to earn. Generally speaking, you must clock about 150 work hours per credit (about 450 work hours for 3 credits). You and the internship coordinator should agree on how many credits you plan to earn, and the internship coordinator will record this number on your internship enrollment form when approving the internship. However, the internship coordinator has no way of entering this number in CampS. You are the only one allowed to enter the number in CampS, which you do when you enroll in the course.


Students for whom summer tuition represents a significant financial burden will appreciate the good news that IS 420 students are considered full-time for financial aid purposes. To get this benefit, complete and submit the Full-Time Equivalent FTE Verification Form.


Internship Goals: Much of the internship enrollment form is self-explanatory, but the goals are likely not. As an IS intern, you are to develop at least three internship goals in conversation with the IS Department internship coordinator and your on-site internship supervisor. Each goal is to have three parts: job duty, time frame, and success criterion.


            Job duties: The first part of each goal should be a brief statement of something you are planning to contribute to your employer. This would be a description of part of the work you will do, the reason you have been hired, a statement of value you will bring to the internship provider. For example, you may write, “I will participate in the design of a Web-based customer relationship management system” or “I will be trained to help support users of a recently implemented order processing system.”


            Time frame: The second part of each goal should be a brief statement of how and when you plan to accomplish the job duty. This will usually take the form of a percent of effort or deadline. An example of a statement of percent of effort would be, “I plan to work on this goal, on average, about two hours per day throughout my internship.” An example of a deadline would be, “I plan to accomplish this goal by the end of the first month of my internship.”


            Success criterion: The third part of each goal should be a brief statement of how your employer will measure the achievement of the goal. This is essentially a statement of how your performance in the internship will be evaluated. In the absence of more specific criterion information, a common and perfectly acceptable statement would be, “my performance will be evaluated by my supervisor.” If you can identify more detailed evaluation criteria, you will want to record them. For example, you may write, “The effectiveness of my website design will be evaluated by feedback from customers who use it” or “My work with end-users will be evaluated by a satisfaction survey completed by a random sample of customers with whom I work.”


            Example goals: Using the above directions, your goals would look something like these examples:


·         I have been assigned to participate in the design of a Web-based customer relationship management system. I expect to work on this goal, on average, about two hours per day throughout my internship. My performance will be evaluated by my supervisor.


·         I will be trained to help support users of a recently implemented order processing system. I am to complete this training by the end of the first month of my internship. My success in this training will be evaluated by completing exercises during the training and by passing an end-of-training exercise; additionally, a random sample of people with whom I work after the training is complete will complete a satisfaction survey.”


            Goal changes: Goal development is important to a successful internship, and you are to work closely with your on-site supervisor and internship coordinator to develop them prior to being approved to enroll in this course. However, the short-term nature of internships means that even the mostly carefully planned goals can change during the internship to meet changing organizational needs. Also, some on-site supervisors may not have a clear idea of precisely what your assignments will be until shortly before (or even after) your internship begins. This is natural and should not be a source of undue concern for you. Simply have the goal-setting conversation using the best information available at the time; this may be your on-site supervisor’s initial ideas, descriptions of some typical intern activities, or examples of jobs that past interns have been assigned. If you and your on-site supervisor change one or more of your goals during the internship, simply inform the on-campus internship coordinator of the changes. The purpose of this initial goal-setting is to get you and your supervisor thinking and talking about what will make your internship rewarding for both of you.


Site Visit: Part-way through each internship, you are responsible to schedule a site visit for your on-campus internship coordinator. The purpose of this visit is to discuss with you and your on-site supervisor your satisfaction with the internship so far and to make any adjustments in the situation that may be needed to assure you a high quality experience. It is also to discuss your performance with you and your on-site supervisor so as to assure that the internship provider is getting appropriate value for investing in you. The visit will include a discussion of your internship goals, and it may also include a tour of your work facility, a look at the work you are doing, and other appropriate activities. It will always include expressions of gratitude to the internship provider for giving such opportunities to university students. Some internship providers schedule an official intern reporting day (often near the end of the internship), while others may have no up-front plans for a site visit; either way, it is important that this visit occur, and it is your responsibility to schedule it.


Daily Log: You are to write a summary of your activities every work day of your internship. The entries need not be long—a sentence or paragraph will often suffice—but they should describe how many hours you worked, how you spent your time, anything noteworthy about the day, and what you learned. Note that this is a simple activity occupying only a few minutes if you do it every day. It can become an overwhelming burden if you fall behind, so be sure to make your log entry every day.



Work Samples: As appropriate, submit samples of your work (screen shots, source code, reports, documentation, etc.) to illustrate your internship activities. Note that you should cooperate with your employer in protecting sensitive information. Get all work samples approved by your on-site supervisor before including them in the journal; your supervisor is free to black out or withhold sensitive information as needed. Your on-campus internship coordinator is committed to maintaining appropriate confidentiality and is willing to sign a nondisclosure agreement if needed. If your on-site supervisor is not able to approve any work samples for inclusion in the daily journal, please have him/her email the on-campus internship coordinator a message to that effect, and they will not be required of you.


Final Report: A major product of your internship will be your final report. The report should contain three sections: an introduction, body, and conclusion. The introduction should establish context by naming the company where you worked, your supervisor, the general nature of your job duties, etc. The body should begin with a listing of the goals you specified for the internship and then give your reflection on each goal; the reflection should review such things as how the goal changed throughout the internship, how much time and effort you spent achieving it, what you learned in the process, what you did well, and what you would improve next time. The conclusion should summarize the value of the internship and comment on ways the IS curriculum either did or did not prepare you to succeed in the internship. Note that your comments on the IS curriculum are very important to the IS faculty; we discuss them carefully and make changes in our courses in response as needed, so please be careful to give your best advice. Note also that your report is to be a professional-looking business document: title page, table of contents, page headers and footers, page numbers, in-text section headings, etc. Reports are graded on content, organization, language mechanics, and format.



Performance Evaluation: The single most heavily weighted component of your internship grade is your on-site supervisor’s evaluation of your work performance. At least once during your internship, your on-site supervisor should go over your internship performance with you. S/he should put the evaluation in writing, preferably using a standard form from the organization providing the internship. (If for some reason an on-site performance evaluation form is unavailable, your supervisor may use one available through the UW-Eau Claire Career Services Office; click here for that form.) An end-of-internship performance evaluation is to be sent directly from your on-site supervisor to your on-campus internship coordinator; you are not to hand-deliver it. (It’s not that we distrust you; it’s just that if a question ever did arise about the origin of an evaluation, we’d need to be able to say the correct policy was followed.)


Ethical Conduct: Ethical conduct means dressing appropriately and communicating honestly and politely with superiors, colleagues, and subordinates at the internship site and with the on-campus internship coordinator and other academic personnel at the university. It means working productively at the internship site and adhering to all policies of the organization that provides the internship. It means developing your own internship goals, writing your own daily log, submitting only work samples you developed, and writing your own final report. It means cooperating with your on-site supervisor to submit an accurate, timely performance evaluation. Ethical conduct also means obeying the law. Students who engage in unethical behavior connected with this class are subject to an F grade for the course and referral to other appropriate authorities.





Time Frame


Prior to

Enrolling in

This Course

·         Complete the internship enrollment form, including internship goals.

·         Obtain the on-campus IS internship coordinator’s signature.

·         Receive email from Career Services authorizing you to enroll in this course.

·         Enroll in the course, remembering to specify the agreed number of credits you will earn.

Just after the

Start of the


·         Email the on-campus internship coordinator with current contact information, changes to internship goals, etc.

·         Arrange a date for the on-site visit.

During the


·         Keep your daily log.

·         Collect work samples approved by your on-site supervisor.

·         Host the on-site visit.

·         Do excellent work every day.

Near the

End of the


·         Have your on-site supervisor evaluate your internship performance.

·         Have your on-site supervisor email your performance evaluation to the on-campus internship supervisor.

·         Do not submit your performance evaluation yourself.

After the

End of the Internship

·         Write a professional-looking, well thought-out final report.

·         Email your daily log, work samples, and final report to your on-campus internship supervisor within six weeks after the end of the internship.